Monday, February 26, 2007

Little Grey Home in the West

This week there has been furious activity to build a new residence for Totto and Sophie. This is part of our program to move all of our monkeys into secure areas.
A suitable site was selected among the trees on the west side of the house. This has meant extending our security high voltage fence, and that in itself was a big task. The house is now almost complete and you can see it in our photograph. The house has a main room and a roof area, which is popular on hot afternoons. There are two doors to the main room and it has a short stairway, which leads to the upstairs area. The doors are made of durable sacking so that getting in and out is possible without exposing the house to rain. The roof is sloping and substantial, offering protection against both rain and sun. The interior is furnished with a large soft pillow and a blanket. In the background of the picture, you can see the mature mango trees that will form part of their enclosure. There is plenty of shade and sunny places to bask. Over the coming week we will be erecting the high wire fence, which will give access to tall trees with plenty of leaves available to chew on. We will be providing bamboo walkways between the trees as well as plenty of swings and ropes to play on. This is a natural home for Totto and his bride. I am sure that they will enjoy the change.
The cost of this kind of construction has now become almost untenable, with the price of metal posts, cement and wire, increasing daily. This work has been made possible by a substantial donation from Totto's human family.

When the golden sun sinks in the hills
And the toil of a long day is o'er
Though the road may be long, in the lilt of a song
I forget I was weary before
Far ahead, where the blue shadows fall
I shall come to contentment and rest
And the toils of the day will be all charmed away
In my little grey home of the west

There are hands that will welcome me in
There are lips I am burning to kiss
There are two eyes that shine just because they are mine
And a thousand things other men miss
It's a corner of heaven itself
Though it's only a tumble-down nest
But with love brooding there, why no place can compare
With my little grey home in the west

"Little Grey Home in the West" was written in 1911 by Hermann Frederic Löhr and D. Eardley-Wilmot

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